Sunday, March 2, 2008

Communications Towers Slaughter Birds

To follow up on our in-class discussion of the actual mortality rates of birds at the hands of various human activites, I wanted to share some extreme cases of bird kills at communications towers.

This article mentions numbers that I have seen in the literature before, but was unable to find for this post.

Note the record 30,000 birds that were killed IN ONE NIGHT.

This article discusses findings of a physician, Dr. Charles Kemper, in the 50s and 60s. The record in this article is a count of 12,000 birds killed on a single night in 1963. According to Kemper, "birds were falling at the rate of four to six a minute."

Considering the tens of thousands of communications towers in the U.S., I think that this analysis sheds a bit of context on concerns about the effect of wind turbines on bird populations.

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